Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Detroit’s Health More Important Than Playoff Seed

from Drew Sharp of the Detroit Free Press,

Home ice doesn’t mean as much in the Stanley Cup playoffs as home court does in the NBA playoffs. It’s more important that the Wings utilize their final games to get as healthy as possible and work the wounded—Pavel Datsyuk, Nicklas Lidstrom, Johan Franzen and Howard, who has nursed a temperamental groin for a month—back into a smooth rhythm.

Honestly, they are better off if they drop to the sixth seed. Chicago trails the Wings by only two points, and the Blackhawks have played some of the league’s best hockey the past 10 games. At the sixth slot, the Wings would get the third conference seed—the champion of the grossly underwhelming Pacific Division—as an opening opponent.

More important, they would get a little more time regaining their full health while dealing with an inferior opponent.

Even in defeat Friday, coach Mike Babcock was pleased with the improved effort following an embarrassing debacle against Columbus on Wednesday. Friday had the feel of a playoff game in that one bounce could shift momentum.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comments

Vladimir16's avatar

How in the world can they be happy with their effort? Sure, they weren’t bad but for such a huge game with divisional position implications you’d think they’d have a little fire in their bellies. But no, they’re happy just to be in the second season. The lack of fire in this team concerns me. We need the ghost of Dallas Drake.

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 03/31/12 at 11:09 AM ET

Ducksworth's avatar

How in the world can they be happy with their effort? Sure, they weren’t bad but for such a huge game with divisional position implications you’d think they’d have a little fire in their bellies. But no, they’re happy just to be in the second season. The lack of fire in this team concerns me. We need the ghost of Dallas Drake.

This.

Posted by Ducksworth from Brownstown, MI on 03/31/12 at 12:24 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

*reads title*

Huh…

*reads author*

Ahhh…

*Skips garbage*

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/31/12 at 01:06 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Evil Drew makes some cogent points, but his constant comparing of the NHL to other sports—perhaps purposefully reminding us that Evil Drew is offering the non-hockey fan’s take in addition to his usual, “Let me enlighten you” spiel—seriously detracts from his credibility and readability. He can’t let the Red Wings exist as a franchise that is not somehow intrinsically linked to sports that those who he would deem “normal people” can understand.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 03/31/12 at 02:49 PM ET

Primis's avatar

Truth is it doesn’t matter who they play, or who’s healthy.  They’ll lose in the first round anyways…

Posted by Primis on 03/31/12 at 03:39 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

Even in defeat Friday, coach Mike Babcock was pleased with the improved effort…

I’d like to see an actual quote from Babcock that indicates that’s how he felt about the team’s effort in that game. From where I sat (curled up in the fetal position sucking on a Harp), it looked like they were outhustled and outplayed in 90% of that game.

Zetterberg said. “...We’ve got four games to get ourselves ready, but the big thing is that we’re getting guys back.”

Getting Errorson and The Horse’s Ass back is not a plus. They’ve both been abysmal since their return (just like they were before they were injured). I’d rather see Smith or Kindl alongside Quincey any day than the Big E(rror). And give me Nyquist on Pavel’s wing and Mursak on the 4th line instead of the having the King of All Floaters out there.

But I do agree with Sharp that the Wings are better off as the 6th seed – even if it means travelling to LA (or Phoenix or Dallas). At least they won’t get blown out in four the way they will if they play Nashville.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 03/31/12 at 04:14 PM ET

shanetx's avatar

But I do agree with Sharp that the Wings are better off as the 6th seed – even if it means travelling to LA (or Phoenix or Dallas)

Do you still feel that way if it’s San Jose?

It’s not really feasible, but I’d rather see St. Louis than San Jose or Nashville (Dallas or Pheonix being preferable to that, of course).

Posted by shanetx from Floydada, Texas on 03/31/12 at 08:50 PM ET

Chet's avatar

I for one am off the “52 sucks” train. Since December he’d been vastly more reliable.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 03/31/12 at 09:33 PM ET

shanetx's avatar

I for one am off the “52 sucks” train. Since December he’d been vastly more reliable.

I feel like he’s gotten a lot more comfortable and that enables him to play more physical, too, which is a lot of what we’ve been waiting to see.

I was in Detroit for the Chicago game on January 14th and was actually very impressed with how well he pushed the Blackhawks around.  It’s not obvious in an apish Prongerian way but it is noticeable.

Posted by shanetx from Floydada, Texas on 03/31/12 at 10:01 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

I for one am off the “52 sucks” train. Since December he’d been vastly more reliable

Hmmm. Then you must have missed that pass he made right to a Preds player right in front of the net on Friday. He makes more boneheaded, “rookie” mistakes in a game than Kindl does in a week.

This is his third full season in the NHL (plus a playoff before that). He should be long past making the same dumb mistakes over and over again. His poor choices of when to move in deep in the offensive zone are particularly frustrating.

The Wings should be getting a lot more than they are for $3.25M per year.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 03/31/12 at 10:09 PM ET

Add a Comment

Please limit embedded image or media size to 575 pixels wide.

Add your own avatar by joining Kukla's Korner, or logging in and uploading one in your member control panel.

Captchas bug you? Join KK or log in and you won't have to bother.

Smileys

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Feed

Most Recent Blog Posts

About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

image

image